60822 Creek Road
Niles, MI 49120


Wow it’s July!? The first 6 months of 2024 have gone by way too fast! I hope everyone that planted a garden kept in mind the Agriculture Department classes for the 2024 State Session. I really hope to have a good turn out in my Department again this year as there were a wonderful number of entries at the 2023 Session. 

​We are a few short months now from our 2024 State Session that is being held in Charelvoix. It will be a great time celebrating yet again the 151st of the Michigan State Grange.
Fair season is here again. In just two short months the Berrien County Youth Fair while be coming to a close, as it starts on August 17th. This year will be bittersweet at the fair. My niece made the hard decission to not exhibit for her final year at the fair. It means less activities for our family at the fair but also a little more free time as well. Please go support our local youth by attending a Fair near you. There are plenty of things to see besides the amusement rides and fair food if that isn’t something you care to do. I remember when I was an exhibitor how it felt to have everyone walk by looking at my animals or still exhibits. It is the youth exhibitors’ time to shine for all of their hard work during the summer months (or winter too) leading up to entry day. 

Well last year at this time we were having an addition put on to the chicken coop. It was so nice this past winter to have the extra space for all of the hens and the rooster to have. This spring we had to do away with the rooster. He was getting too aggressive towards the hens and I had to watch my every move when in the coop as he would come after me. I had a close call and I told my Dad that it was time. I didn’t like culling him but we can’t have something that could seriously injure the hens or humans. Now we just need to get more pullets to help raise egg production back to where we had been.

​As I sit here on June 17th writing this, we are in a very hot start of a week of weather. Today it has been in the mid 90s with heat index of at least 104 degrees. We have had a couple of thunderstorms roll through which is great for the mositure but then the humidity and temperature goes right back up. At least we are getting the mositure to help with the crops and gardens to grow.

​Remember one class that anyone can enter is the class labeled: Any planting in a Unique container. It can be any type of container, but the planting must have grown in the unique container. Keep in mind that you must be able to transport this item to State Session and be able to bring it from your vehicle with little assistance.

​Here is hoping your gardens are growing or will be and that your harvest is bountiful. Until the next MGN….

Wow is it Spring, or Summer!!?? April sure has been up and down with the temperatures. Now we are possibly going to have a frost over the weekend of April 20th.
How many of you have planted anything in your gardens yet? Things that could have been planted by now would be seed potatoes, onion sets, cold crops (cabbages, etc) and I even think carrots but not sure so please check before you plant them! When planning your garden spots, keep in mind the Ag Classes that you can enter at this year’s Annual State Grange Session. Each class is open to Junior members on up to Subordinate members. There are plenty of different classes for all ages and you do not have to live in the Country to do them. I can’t wait to see what Unique containers with plantings come to State Session. Please check the Program Booklet for more details.      
We are getting things done slowly this year around the little farm due to the crazy weather and busy schedules. I have yet to get the chicken coop cleaned but that is because when I have the time it is either not nice weather or I am too tired and need to just rest! This year we will only have feeder pigs to put in the freezers. My niece made the hard decision to not show her last year at the Fair. 
So last year at this time, I mentioned that we were going to double the size of the Coop. Well, it happened, and it was so nice to have so much room over the winter. Of course that means more area to clean too! LOL We still have our “garage” cats of all different ages and colors. They have started to have their litter and we have had at least 3 litters as of the writing of this article.  
Please be mindful that this is the time of year that the country roads and some State Highways will have slow moving farm vehicles on them. If it wasn’t for those farmers and their employees, we wouldn’t have the opportunity to go to farmers’ markets or the grocery stores to get the needed foods to feed our families. Please give those big vehicles and tractors as much room as you can without causing problems for yourself or others.
Well, that is all for now. Please remember whenever possible to buy Local or Locally Grown / Made products! Local asparagus is being harvested in my area of the State. It is hard to believe it is time for that already. I noticed while mowing the yard for the first time on the 13th of April that our rhubarb is at least 1 foot in height already.  
Remember, when possible to buy local or direct from the farm as many farmers either have started their own on Farm store or they sell their goods to other local farmers that have a farm store.
Until later…